Color blind glasses

Polarized fishing glasses: why have two lenses?

Most anglers own multiple rod and reel combos, but some only own one pair of polarized fishing goggles. This is a mistake that could cost them fish.

In addition to helping anglers see in the water, polarized fishing goggles protect your eyes from the sun and flying hooks. I worked as a fishing guide in northern Minnesota for five summers, and one of my rules was that everyone had to wear glasses for safety. To make sure everyone complies, I took two pairs of polarized fishing goggles on loan in my boat.

Even when it’s not possible to see in the water, like catfishing on a muddy river, it’s a good idea to wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from the sun and fishing hooks.

I think you should own at least two lens colors, one of which should be yellow. Each lens color excels in specific situations.

  • Yellow lenses are ideal for low light conditions. This means times close to sunrise and sunset, as well as very cloudy days, whether it is raining or not.
  • Amber or copper lenses are ideal for spotting fish and underwater structures under bright skies in clear or lightly stained water.
  • Gray lenses are a good all-around choice on the water for the sunniest days.

In my experience, it is more difficult to spot fish and underwater structures with gray lenses than with amber lenses. That said, I have buddies who are avid anglers who choose gray over amber when sight fishing. Like many things in life, personal preferences rule the day.

Note: The lens colors I mentioned above are not standard across all brands of sunglasses. That is, companies often have their own lens color names, but the idea is the same. For example, Costa Del Mar has a “Choose a lens color” on his website which dives deep into the subject for his names/choices of specific goals.

The author wears Green Mirror lenses from Costa, which are specially designed for inland anglers who want to see fish and see underwater objects in fairly clear water.

Within the Costa offer, its Green Mirror screen is a best-seller with inland fishermen (bass, pike, muskellunge, etc.), while its Blue Mirror is No. 1 with deep-sea fishermen. Do you remember what I said about your personal preferences? I own both the green (Costa Rafael model) and the blue (Tico model), and even though I only fish inland waters, I prefer the Blue Mirror because it enhances but does not change the natural colors (trees, sky, etc). That’s why some of my buddies wear gray lenses instead of amber or copper. With gray, everything around you looks the same (only brighter), while an amber or copper lens will slightly change the color tone. Yellow lenses change the natural color tones even more.

As the price goes up, you will usually have more choices in lens color. For example, discover the wide range of lenses of Wiley X (fishing goggles priced from $85 to $210). Many of its most popular men’s fishing glasses come in a choice of five different polarized lenses.

If you can afford it, I suggest getting some more expensive polarized fishing glasses in amber, copper, or gray lenses, because those are the ones you’ll be wearing the vast majority of your time on the water. Not only do more expensive fishing goggles have better lenses, they also have stronger frames. If you take care of them, they should last you a very long time. For example, my primary fishing goggles (amber lenses) are nearly 25 years old and still in excellent condition.

Don’t forget the kids when it comes to buying polarized fishing goggles. Children’s glasses will have smaller frames and less expensive frames and lenses. As pictured here, goggles should be worn by anglers, whether you’re in a boat or fishing from shore.

As I said earlier, there is an advantage to having a yellow lens for low light conditions. While you probably don’t want to spend $200 on a deal of yellow lenses that you won’t be wearing as your primary pair, you can find a decent model for $30-$50. For example, the S11 Optics Clinch from hit the king retails for $33.99 and is available in Yellow Silver Mirror lens.

The Strike King S11 Optics Clinch Lens in Silver Mirror Yellow is a great value for the angler who wants a pair of polarized fishing sunglasses specifically designed for low light.

Polarized fishing glasses are a tool that will help you catch more fish. Period. They also protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays, as well as flying hooks. If you don’t own polarized glasses with yellow lenses, it’s time to buy a pair that will help you during low-light periods. You won’t wear yellow lenses as often as amber, copper, or gray lenses, but when the conditions are right (sunrise, sunset, overcast days, etc.), you’ll enjoy better sight.

Be sure to use a sunglasses strap on every pair of polarized fishing goggles. Having a strap like a Croakies allows you to remove the goggles for photos without laying them down where they could be scratched or broken.